One of the things that I really enjoy about my job is opportunity to visit with our families and hold those brand new babies. Is there anything more amazing than a new baby? There is something about looking at that fresh new face and marveling at God's creative nature. Wow! It gives me chills just typing that! To cradle that new life in my hands, can be a bit nerve wracking, yet a blessing. Both ends of the emotional spectrum all wrapped in one tiny life. A life that is just beginning. A life that none of us can really begin to fathom. A life that parents don't fully understand where it will go and the impact of simple days. Oh, the parents have prepared to the best of their abilities. They have all of the necessary equipment, they have gotten advice from family, friends and the experts. They have an unending heart full of love for this new little one. There will be joys, there will be difficulties, there will be sorrow. It takes all of those things to live a full life.
We have just completed the season of Advent, the beginning of the Church year. Just as we complete Advent, when we think of Jesus coming as a baby, we begin a new calendar year. A new year when we look forward to the events of the coming year. Perhaps a wedding, a graduation, a special milestone anniversary celebration, or the coming of a new baby. We anticipate an improvement in ourselves. We set goals or make resolutions. We plan what our days and weeks will contain. We organize our year.
As much as I like to plan, I have a better idea. Ephesians 4:22-24, “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” Paul's picture to the Ephesians and to us is a really good one to consider at this time of the year. Think about taking off that dirty jacket that really needs to go to the laundry. You wouldn't continue to wear something that smelled bad or needed to be treated before going into the wash. You would take care of it sooner rather than later. When the dirty and stinky is taken off you would put on a new outfit that is clean and fresh. An outfit that not only helps you avoid the stench, but one that highlights the good happening in your life. Put on this new attitude to show what God is doing in your life and how you are becoming righteous and holy. The best part is this new attitude can be fresh and new every morning. God doesn't just give us a once in a lifetime chance to get it right. He gives us that fresh new start each day or even multiple times a day. The next time you get to see a new baby, remember, God is working in your life and giving you a new self, each and every day.